Let’s face it… we’re a society that creates a lot of crap that can’t be easily disposed of. Plastic has been a blessing in manufacturing but a curse to the environment. So, how do we “Greenies” cope? We do our best to use fewer plastic products (a tough one since plastic is used in so many things), and we try to find as many ways as possible to reuse the plastic items already in our possession until they absolutely, positively have to be sent to a landfill somewhere.
When it comes to used soft drink bottles, I cut them to use:
- the bottom third or so as a nursery pot,
- the top bit as a funnel, and
- the middle ring (if you’ve cut it neatly) as a bottomless pot in the garden for shallow-rooted plants that you want to restrain within a small area. (I haven’t needed to do this myself, but it’s a possibility!)
Recently I was introduced to the idea of using the bottom and top pieces of the bottle as a unit to form a self-watering container. Just invert the top of the bottle, with the cover loosely screwed on, and fill it with potting mix. The cap keeps the mix from falling out. Half fill the bottom of the bottle with water, and place the inverted top half in it. Water will seep through the loosened cap and moisten the potting mix. What I love about this design is that there’s no way for mosquitoes to get to the water, and you can see your plant roots as they grow along the sides of their growing container!
Another way to utilize used bottles is to pierce a few small holes along the sides and bottom of the bottle, and bury the bottle so that only the top is above ground. Fill the bottle with water, cap it loosely so that mosquitoes won’t be able to breed in the water, and it will slowly release water underground, directly to your plant’s roots. This will keep your plants happy and hydrated, even on hot days!
22 April 2010 is Earth Day. What can you do to take care of our planet?